Green Day | God’s Favorite Band
The last time Green Day released a greatest hits album, 2001’s ‘Superhits!’, things were looking a little shaky. ‘Warning’, from the year before, was their first LP since signing to a major label without multi-platinum sales figures. The wave of success that had followed their breakout ‘Dookie’ was crashing. And the trio hadn’t yet released ‘American Idiot’, the decade-defining record that would become not just their ‘Sgt Peppers’ or ‘Dark Side Of The Moon’, but a hugely successful Broadway musical and a major reason their career didn’t go the way of The Offspring.
The arrival of ‘God’s Favorite Band’ finds the band in much ruder health. Sure, there have been some rough patches: the self-importance of releasing three albums (‘¡Uno!’, ‘¡Dos!’, and ‘¡Tré!’) in as many months; Billie Joe Armstrong’s subsequent rehab stint. But at the tail end of 2017, the band were still basking in the glow of a huge world arena tour in support of their US #1 album ‘Revolution Radio’.
That return-to-form LP provides three tracks on this chronologically sequenced collection that features all the songs you’d expect at one of their spectacular live shows. Beginning with ‘2000 Light Years Away’ from 1991’s ‘Kerplunk’, it storms through ‘Dookie’ evergreens like ‘Longview’ and ‘Basket Case’, before introducing some variety to the punk sound with the acoustic ballad ‘Good Riddance (Time Of Your Life)’ from ‘Nimrod’.
The musical palette continues to expand with ‘American Idiot’ tracks like ‘Boulevard Of Broken Dreams’ and ‘Wake Me Up When September Ends’, while ‘Holiday’, ‘Know Your Enemy’ (from 2008’s ‘21st Century Breakdown’), and ‘Bang Bang’ (from ‘Revolution Radio’) prove they never lost their ability to record big, dumb three-chord rock songs with a social conscience.
‘Back In The USA’, the obligatory new song (discounting the new version of 2016’s ‘Ordinary World’ with added Miranda Lambert) continues that tradition and proves there’s still still plenty of gas in the tank.